"Citizens of 2020" Tour

The European Union is the latest Nobel Peace Prize laureate. At the same time the European idea of peace and democracy seems to be challenged increasingly and its credibility loses its strength. The financial crisis has caused stress on the European system and its citizens. Consequently, this has lead to quick accusations and generalisations in political dialogue and left its marks on the general public. Mutual distrust, a distorted picture of reality and openly displayed hatred towards other nationalities can be witnessed in times of social and financial instability. To make matters worse, the crisis has not only lead to national budget cuts but also to a threat of insufficient financing of European mobility programmes.

Where does the Europe of the people find its place when the unemployed youth is left standing in the streets and the EU itself pushes European mobility further of the edge? How transparent and democratic is Europe after all? What can Europe’s citizens do to defend their right to social inclusion? At first glance, the launched European Citizens’ Initiative seems to offer a solution for Europe’s debated ‘democratic deficit’. It enables EU citizens to call directly on the European Commission to propose a legal act onto the EU level. At second sight, however, it still remains a non-binding mechanism, even if one million signatures stand behind a given initiative.

One of the first European Citizens’ Initiatives was Fraternité 2020 with the objective to enhance EU exchange programmes such as Erasmus or the European Voluntary Service and to contribute to a united Europe based on solidarity among citizens. These objectives closely reflect the content of the Ride for your Rights! – Manifesto of the first two project tours and therefore call for a joint effort to push the F2020 initiative to a successful ending.

2013 marks the beginning of an expansion of the Ride for your Rights! - idea. By following our motto ‘united in cycling’ we shall attract a group of diverse people who can identify themselves with the overall aim of Ride for your Rights! and consider it worthwhile supporting the tour’s objectives. All 2013 actions will once more appeal to the right of European education and mobility but will be aimed at a wider target audience compared to previous years.

The objectives of the Citizens of 2020 Tour are to

  • contribute to the advocacy of learning mobility by promoting the European Citizens’ Initiative Fraternité 2020;
  • disseminate quality standards of learning mobility by representing Campus Europae along the tour;
  • pursue the vision of enrichment of the society through international students by promoting the Erasmus Student Network;
  • call attention to Europe’s recent history by cycling along the Iron Curtain Trail;
  • remind European citizens how exceptional and fragile the continent’s biodiversity is by cycling along the European Green Belt;
  • build a community of citizens sharing the vision of Ride for Your Rights! by publishing a tour diary.

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